Oceanus deploys moorings in the Vandenberg array

Another good day on the water for Oceanus, this time working south of Point Sal in the shadow of the Vandenberg launch towers. The marine layer burned off and we had a bluebird day view of Point Sal. We installed VB25N just offshore of Jim Thomson’s SWIFT buoy and Falk’s nearshore line. The array is really starting to shape up. The lander on deck just before deployment has an upward-looking ADCP and a GusT turbulence sensor on top.

Wind and waves picked up in the afternoon, but no problem for mooring ops. Some great boat handling from the Oceanus captain and mates. They’re trading stories about how close they were able to place our T-moorings and landers on each of their watches. We saw the big rollers breaking on Point Sal. As we headed offshore to deploy the 30 and 50 meter Vandenberg moorings, we ran over the top of some large internal waves. See the echosounder plot. Lisa Nyman (UMiami) could see them in the Marine Doppler Radar too. Out at the 50-m site, there was a fishermen working some long lines of pots (lobster? — question is from us Oregonians where Dungeness crabs rule). If you tow in that area, heads up.

Tomorrow (Fri, 9/8) we’ll deploy our last mooring/lander pair at MS100, then head up to near Avila Beach to transfer Jim Lerczak and two students to the R/V Kalipi. We’ll give a shout to Sally Ride on the marine radio tomorrow morning to plan ops.

—Jack Barth and Jim Lerczak